While I am not familiar with every single homeschool law in every single state, I am familiar with the laws in North Carolina. In North Carolina, as with many other states, you are required to submit a Notice of Intent to Operate a Homeschool. Don't let the sound of that scare you. All it involves is answering a few questions about the type of homeschool you will run.
****The example below is strictly for North Carolina, so be sure to check with your state regarding the questions on the Notice for Intent in your state.****
Filling out your Notice of Intent to Operate a Homeschool:
First step: Choose whether you are Opening a New Homeschool or Reopening a Homeschool. Simply means, if this is your first time homeschooling, you're Opening a New School. If you've homeschooled in the past you're simply Reopening a Homeschool. For most parents, this is your first time homeschooling so choose "Opening a New Homeschool". All of my steps will involve Opening a New Homeschool.
Second step: List the County in which is your homeschool is located.
Third step: Choose the name of your homschool. You may name your school anything you like. What I did was come up with some names I liked, then each of my kids came up with names they liked, and then we took a vote on what sounded like the best school name.
Fourth step: List the address of your homeschool. More than likely this is simply your home address, since most of us homeschool out of our own home.
Fifth step: List your email address. This is simply so that North Carolina can contact you through email if need be. Sometimes they email you saying that your Notice of Intent has been received and that they will be verying your information soon.
Sixth step: List your home phone number. You do not have to give the state your phone number if you do not want to. That decision is solely up to you. For me, I felt it was best to give them my number in case they ever had any questions or concerns.
Seventh step: List the School Owner: This simply means, you is operating the school. If you and your spouse are operating the school together, you can list one parent as the owner and the other as the Chief Administrator. The Chief Administrator is the parent who will be doing the majority of the teaching, but again, if you and your spouse will be jointly homeschooling, simply decide who's going to be Owner and who's going to be Chief Administrator.
Eighth step: List the Chief Administrator. This will be whatever person you chose from step seven. If you are the only one doing the homeschool, this would be you, as well as you would be the School Owner.
Ninth step: List the full names of all adults who will be teaching your children. If it just you, list just yourself. If it is you and your spouse, list both you and your spouse. If you have another family member or friend who is going to also teach your children, include them too. Just keep in mind that every person teaching your child must have a high school diploma or equivalent, so if you know someone did not finish high school and did not get a GED, they are not allowed to teach your child.
Tenth step: Well, on the application it's listed at Number 11, so for the sake of confusion we will list it as Eleventh step: Name the month and year that you will open your homeschool. Most homeschools still follow the public school system in that they begin in the fall and end the end of spring or first of summer, but you are free to start whatever month you choose.
Twelfth step: Choose whether you are going to be a religious or non-religious school. Keep in mind that you do not have to teach an entire religious curriculum in order to be labeled as a religious school. In fact, you are not required to do anything religious in your homeschool. Most parents do choose religious simply because they pray before starting school or pray before the lunch meal, but again, even this is required to be listed as a religious school. If you do not want anything to do with any type of religious affiliation, list yourself as non-religious. This listing is based solely on what you want to be listed as. Just like with the school name, there are no right or wrong answers.
Thirteenth step: This is where you just list the ages and genders of those who will be in your homeschool. In my case I have one 13 year old male and one 11 year old male. so I simply put a "1" in the box for male 13, and a "1" in the box for male 11.
After that you simply sign or electronically submit your application. Most parents choose to sign and mail in the application simply because you have to provide high school diplomas or GED completion papers for each adult who will be teaching, so rather than submit the form electronically and wait ofr the state to email you back with the fax number of where to send proof of diplomas, they simply sign the application, attach all the high school diplomas or GED completions, then mail the form in. Just makes the process go a little faster, but again, how you submit your application is totally up to you.
**It is also important to note that you can not be accepted, nor denied, your request. The Notice of Intent is merely the paperwork the state has to have on file in order to list you as a school and send you your school ID card. As long as everyone teaching your child has a high school diploma or equivalent, you request is granted and you can open your school.